Communicating with an addict can be one of the most difficult parts of the overall ordeal. It's not easy to talk to a person who is so dependent on a substance that causes a wide range of symptoms. Even if the substance abuser is a loved one, communication can often be ineffective. Addicts are usually confused due to the drugs or alcohol they're using. In addition, you might still be shocked that they're an addict. All of this makes for poor conversation and communication.
Below, you'll find several tips that might better help you talk with your loved one, even though substance abuse is an issue. This might also open up the door for a conversation about rehab and recovery as well. Do you need an alternative Asheville drug and alcohol treatment center that you can also trust? Legacy can help, call now!
More Effectively Communicate with Addicts
Don't enable them. Sometimes, the only time we communicate with an addict is when they need something. Whether it be money, a place to sleep or a ride to their favorite hangout spot, giving in and doing what they ask might be a factor in their continued behavioral issues. Try to interact with them differently, instead of only talking with them when they need something.
In addition, some loved ones only talk with an addict when they're criticizing them. They choose only to speak negatively about their actions or show their disappointment. This can also be considered enabling, as it often drives the addict to use more. Instead of enabling them, show them you care. Listen to them without interrupting them or criticizing their actions. Research addiction, rehab and recovery and try looking at this situation from their point of view. Then, begin communicating with them on a different level, not just when they need something that might contribute to their substance abuse.
Be consistent. While you're trying to break the habit of enabling them, you need to be consistent. Don't jump in headfirst listening and understanding and then burn out when you don't get results fast enough. Being consistent will work. It takes time to start getting through to an addict. It might take 6 weeks, 6 months or even a year. Eventually, though, if you stick with it and don't flip flop, you'll see a difference.
Be predictable. Stress often further leads an addict to substance abuse. With this in mind, try not to surprise them with your actions or words. Stay as predictable as possible. Set a good example and remember that catching them off guard might be more detrimental than you could ever expect.
Communicating with an addict can be extremely difficult and stressful. That doesn't mean you shouldn't continue to try. With these tips, we hope to help make things easier for you. If you're interested in learning more about how to effectively talk with an addict, feel free to visit back with our next blog post.
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